Monday, March 20, 2017

Brexit, British Empire, #Futurelearn, @DavidOlusoga

I was fascinated to read David Olusoga in the Observer on Sunday. The headline states that "Empire 2.0" is "dangerous nostalgia". The text concludes with mention of "delusion". Previously Empire 2.0 has turned up for me while watching an interview with Liam Fox on Sky News. He told Sophie Ridge that the term came from mostly from civil servants. But he seems to support the associated ideas.

Empire 2.0 about 7 minutes in but best to watch all of it for context.

I recently did a MOOC for Futurelearn from Exeter University on the British Empire. My homework was a short text on where the Empire was now or something like that. I chose to concentrate on attitudes around Brexit. Text below, not time yet to cut and paste this together. Just notes so far.

David Olusoga mentions Hugh Gaitskell in 1962 for a take on the Commonwealth. The Conservative Party could be much more interesting. The book "Continental Drift" by Benjamin Grob-Fitzgibbon (CUP 2016) covers policy on Empire and Europe from Churchill to Major.

Possible muddle here between history, journalism and social media / gossip. I shall carry on with a blog anyway. May tidy this up, meanwhile cut and paste from Google doc where I kept my notes so far


Legacy of British Empire

The present situation is part of European history and empires, the Dutch and Portuguese included. The financial aspect of the British Empire is now part of the USA dollar situation. So there is a wider context than first appears.

Public opinion is influenced by empire, notions of jingoism (UK) and exceptionalism (USA) for example. These seem to be less rational than could be shown as related to anything specific. Hitchcock remade the 39 Steps as North by North West , there is not much need to describe the external threat.

History as a subject can cross over with journalism or just speculation. The book Continental Drift by Benjamin Grob-Fitzgibbon describes UK policy on Europe up to the time of John Major. It shows how attitudes to Empire led to expectations of a role in Europe that turned out to be quite different to reality. The move towards leaving Europe has been based on an idea of “post-Geography” .

How much sense this makes remains to be seen. It is possible that the British government is deluded, as are most of the newspapers and the public. Will a global market be less of a threat for the “just about managing”? It is not yet possible to discuss this as history but whatever happens will be explained as part of a longer story.

First some links to clarify what was in my original text

"post-Geography" is a term used by Liam Fox. It might be futurist but I think it looks back to a previous time for UK options.

Hitchcock continued Buchan themes in film from novels. The course included the adventure stories in print. Hitchcock developed repeated ideas in USA from UK and they fit with Empire and Cold War.

More about Continental Drift

Intro as free PDF

Full info

You have to fill in the gaps towards the end. But it is clear enough about the Empire expectations post WW2 and the early approach to Europe from Heath and Wilson.


Google doc now public

So comment please. Empire 2.0 and "delusion" both hard to back up with facts but continues as tweets until history.

Course site for Empire    starts again 27th March

#FLEmpire  on Twitter

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Expanded Vagueness

This post will itself be expanded soon. I am just running out of time this weekend so need a quick version to explain how other posts might still fit together.

Previously "Intended Vagueness" posted on LinkedIn claimed that vagueness could be positive as a way to make connections. Ideas about the Learning Company or Organization had been criticised as too vague to make sense for academics.

My interest in learning and quality came from the print industry, then I became more interested in digital and all forms of communication. The words and search tags I use are ways to connect mostly these three areas.

"Social learning" seems to work well on Twitter and relates to Futurelearn and most MOOCs. It may not be clearly defined for academics but there is some support in practice. I have lost trackof Mode ! and 2 knowledge. Design Science is not being updated as far as I can tell. "Design Thinking" crops up more often. Communication is probably whatever the London College of Communication covers. Not sure they have fully worked out where print fits in but some statement will arrive with the new building.

This vagueness could include Management Learning, the Learning Company, Edwards Deming, various words used in previous versions of the Hello Spiders blog. So the current stage is to afford some connections. Forms of clarity may follow but the word cloud will get more crowded.

YouTube channels sorting out soonish

Some progress on a leap forward, but meanwhile quite confusing. I have been presenting my YouTube channel as Rougemont Global Broadcasting. this started as a joke way to test possibility of Exeter TV. Meanwhile the online video aspect has gained strength. I still think a local cable channel is worth continuing with but back to topic.

Subscriptions seem to offer an alternative to advertising. Mostly relevant for the conference style content. How to demonstrate production levels ahead of subscriptions and income? A new channel - mtwr - was started for Management Theory at Work in Radio but only one video was in it.

This just shows the extent of the problem. Sound ok in Phonic FM studio but lighting is terrible. Recently I went to the Lancaster campus and recorded some clips about voice interface that also showed how locations could be used in a sequence. More on this later. You should get an idea from the videos on YouTube.

Some topics continue as sound in Exeter. The Spine walk in Lancaster is being updated so a walk between spots is best left till later in the year. There can be tests meanwhile including links to other spots.

In Exeter there is now a Tubers studio, mostly intended for teenagers. There may be hours of the day when it can be used but not sure this will suit the guests. Definitely a good sign for how things are moving.

Production may get easier with software to compensate for lack of equipment. Adobe Spark improved this clip from original. Broken into two as Spark seems to get impatient after 15 seconds.

Variety continues, playlists offer the options for a mix.

RGB2 also exists as a subscription possibility for music and performance in and around Exeter. Plans for later this month assume better weather.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Digital Disruption and Business Schools

( Based on an earlier draft in Read G put by mistake. feedback ok on using the pictures)

 For a while I have been interested in how media organisations transition with digital technology. It sometimes seems to me that academics and business schools comment about this as if they are not part of it. Somehow the buildings and campus will continue as a base even if FM radio for example disappears in the cloud.

Learning Technologies has some involvement from HE so there will be comment on this later.  At  BETT there were a couple of events that might make a lead news item.

Futurelearn won the BETT Award for Free Digital Content/Open Educational Resources for Schools. I don't think they are yet much recognised at HE level. The Open University has cut back on regional support centres in the UK though they continue to invest in Futurelearn. I don't know of other examples where this sort of switch has already happened.

The Department for International Trade had a theatre where one presentation was from the Online Business School. I did do a video but the background noise is a problem Here are some stills to show the gist of it. BETT is a solid tech show and I guess there will be more HE over time, including some more examples of digital plans, maybe with some disruption in the background.

Any links or content most welcome. I will try to do an expanded post in the next week or two.

notes ahead of campus visit, Lancaster then Exeter

Probable visit to Lancaster the week after next. Hope to check the campus even if just for currant backgrounds. Notes below also on Exeter when I get back. the topics and links are all over the place. There will be a bit more focus later.

Mostly the same as before. Campus as location, even if the clips come from somewhere else. InfoLab21 as tech inspiration, business school as critique, library/ bookshop as check on current situation. The walk continues north but has less focus, more art and speculation.

Repeat, any site could be an arts centre, including a campus. One clip from Goethe MOOC still on Youtube and worth a look. Actually iconic buildings still continue, but the online aspect is an issue.

So one question is how to find a studio or something like it. Phones may be ok depending on post production. 

Question also about voice as a computer interface. (In Exeter the Phonic FM studio is ok for sound but terrible lighting so not much video there)

See also playlist for critiqe and Management Theory at Work

When back in Exeter I will follow up on Adobe software. At BETT there was news about Spark and Chromebooks. Not sure how this fits with the full Creative Cloud. There are licences at the Phoenix Arts Centre but not sure about the suite in the campus library. 

In general there are resources around enough for an edit once the locations are sorted and a better script outline is available. Question continues as to how disruption will reach the campus.

For "management theory at work in radio" search YouTube on #mtwr

#mtw3 for Management Theory at Work online version

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

University as a business continued, skills and research

After previous post on business schools I found an article in print Guardian yesterday suggesting some UK universities may close because of financial issues around reduced numbers of students. Link HERE , Apparently the "lower tariff" unis are losing out to the "research-intensive".

What strikes me is that there is no mention of online competition. Presumably the "research-intensive" are not offering skills that can be on offer from forms of MOOC with a certificate. LinkedIn Learning for example now work closely with several software providers.

Maybe I should use "research" and "skills" rather than modes one and two. Probably easier for most people to follow.

Nothing yet to suggest that business schools face any problems. But I gathered at Learning Technologies that ITPRO.TV might offer business course as well as technology. Not sure what the time scale is on this. But there could be some comment on possible disruption. Business school shifts resource online?

Maybe in a blog post or in a journal. Links please.

Monday, February 06, 2017

Mode One Knowledge as an Imaginary

My impression is that there has not been much recently about knowledge as Mode One and Mode Two. I usually try to find something when wondering why Peter Scott writes so little about the MOOC and associated technology. This note is just to check for some response. I plan to do some more study since the Xmas break when I noticed a new paper uploaded to Academia but the detail may have to wait.

Bob Jessop has another version on a website, could be easier to find. My first take is that anything could be assumed to be an Imaginary, for example forms of knowledge. The paper looks at learning in some sort of crisis. I am going to take the crisis to be some sort of digital transformation. See previous posts on if universities need to be on a campus or could be blended with online.

Crisis-management and learning
Learning has a critical role in crises (including crises of crisis-management), affecting the capacity to formulate imagined recoveries. It has the same selectivities (semiotic, structural, technological, and agential) as semiosis more generally and also undergoes variation, selection, and retention. A crisis does not automatically lead to learning: cognitive capacities may be lacking or the situation may be too unstructured (chaotic); or, again, lessons learnt are irrelevant because the situation is too turbulent to apply them. Learning depends on a dialectics of Erlebnis and Erfahrung that has its own temporalities, shaped by crisis dynamics. Erlebnis refers to immediate experience in the face of disorientation and associated attempts to make sense of disorienting events/processes. Erfahrung refers to the lessons learnt from this disorientation and sense-making. Importantly, it typically includes an element of the objective dimensions of the crisis – lessons must be adequate to the crisis, not just idiosyncratic reactions.
More to look at later but this relate to academics as much as anyone. Knowledge continues to be developed in some form outside the formal universities, whether or not there is a crisis yet. Probably things appear to continue much the same, like book publishing. "Mode Two" still makes sense but "Mode One" is so far away I will try to study it as imaginary, possibly evolving the crisis.
Meanwhile I am coming across "design thinking" more than "design science". This is based on Twitter, I tend to click on the tags that show up. I will discuss this more with JD . Search on YouTube still shows us as a result for DJ and Design Science. We are just trying to work out what is going on with radio but theory is in background somehow.
Of course still following the Guardian and reporting on the MOOC etc. Objections seem to be that the energy is coming from commercial interests. Could not find any reporting on BETT or Learning Technologies. My suggestion is that YouTube should have been at BETT if only to show the scope of where learning now happens.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

Hello Exeter Uni Library / Digital Suite and Adobe Software

This is a sort of extended tweet. Trying to find out who to contact about the workstations in the library and software in general.

I recently went to BETT and found out a bit about Spark and Chromebook options. I made some outline contacts but have not been able to get email replies since. Not sure I have the best info.

So who would know about the workstations on the lowest floor of the library?  Creative Suite is included but seems not to be on a subscription for latest versions. Room is also used for meetings and study.

Spark is online free software for social media content. Chromebooks coming soon that accept Android apps, reduced versions of Creative Cloud.

I am still checking out details but would like to know who and how to contact.

Saturday, February 04, 2017

Big Fibs, printing in Exeter before William of Orange

In an age of alternative facts I can hold no strong opinions. But I was surprised when the BBC allowed Lucy Worsley to claim that William of Orange arrived in Exeter to make propaganda and brought his own printing press with him. An alternative view is that he headed for Exeter as there was already a printing press in production.

Extract from Exeter Working Papers in British Book Trade History Ian Maxted

"So far as we know at present the first resident printer does not appear in the city until 1683 and we do not know his name. ... Since 1683 the city has never lacked a resident printer ..." Thus W.G.Hoskins in Two thousand years in Exeter. He goes on to say that the first whose name is known for certain is Samuel Darker in 1698, noting that a printer with the initials J.B. printed for William of Orange in 1688 and that he is thought to be one John Baker. His statement has been widely accepted.

So this possibility is at least worth a mention.